Firstly, my apologies for being a day late in announcing the February Prize Poem - check out the post prior to this one to read the winning poem by Leatherdykeuk.
I spent 1st March driving up the length of France, from Antibes on the Mediterranean to Calais on the English Channel watching the landscape change along the way: the snow-peaked Alpes Maritimes, mimosa trees in full bloom, blossoming peach trees, the sun setting behind a swathe of white wind turbines, the dark terrils (slag heaps from old coal mines) of Nord Pas de Calais.
Landscape affects us all. The sea always has a profound effect on me. Mountains too. And when I spend time in the mountains in Wales there’s a part of me that feels ‘connected’ that I don’t think I feel elsewhere.
My first poem prompt of the month is to write a poem that has its roots in some aspect of landscape.
Before you begin, brainstorm around the word ‘landscape’. What can it mean, suggest, and apply to? Landscapes might be physical, emotional and intellectual. They carry moods. They change with time. Let yourself write freely, don’t judge what your mind tosses out.
Look for ‘landscape’ poems in collections and anthologies. Are these poems about more than one aspect of landscape? What ideas do they make you think about? What themes emerge from the details?
Here are a couple more specific ideas that you might like to work with, but feel free to wander off along your own track, or paved road, too.
- Write a poem about yourself, or someone else, which combines the physical landscape of a particular environment with the landscape of the human body.
- Write a poem that explores/juxtaposes two contrasting landscapes: e.g. past and present, natural and industrial, lush and barren, physical and emotional
I look forward to reading your work.